California Educator

April/May 2021

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Lockdown Theatre Bruce Olav Solheim, Citrus College Faculty Association, wrote Ali's Bees in 2017. Ali, whose parents were killed in a terrorist attack in Iraq, has been sent to East Los Angeles to live with his beekeeper grandfather. Ali struggles with grief and post-traumatic stress disor- der, but enjoys working with the bees and decides to do his science project on them. His work draws in Lupe, a classmate with problems of her own, and Jenks, a bully who cares for his disabled father. The three form an unlikely connection as they try to overcome their dif- ferences and challenges. Available on Amazon. Solheim, a disabled U.S. Army vet who teaches history and is a former Fulbright scholar, has written a play based on the book and is o™ering the streamplay (with live, remote actors and 3D virtual-world settings) free to middle and high school students. Check out a prerecorded version seen in February by students in grades 6-8 at Edgewood Academy in La Puente. To view it or the trailer, go to and search for "Ali's Bees." To request the streamplay, contact or Student-Created Books The motto of Shadow Ridge School in Hesperia is " The Idea Factory," and high school teachers Jim Ho™mann (social studies) and Barbara Jacobs (English), both Hesperia Teachers Association members, provide plenty of opportunities for creativity. Among the various real-world projects, their stu- dents helped create two children's books, Pancho Claus Vol. 2 and Face and Heart: An A ztec Tale. (Ho™mann helped with Pancho Claus Vol. 1; both vol- umes involved the "father of Chicano music" Lalo Guerrero and his son Dan.) Students formatted Pancho Claus, based on the beloved Tex-Mex Santa and born out of the Chicano rights movement, and contributed several images. Face and Heart is based on a song by another Guerrero son, Mark, about the ancient Aztec people, who considered children their most precious resource; illustrations were done almost entirely by students. All available on Amazon. A scene from the trailer of the streamplay. Continued on Page 59 60 CTA & You Often educators' creativity spills over into a book, blog, app or other work. We're happy to showcase members' talents. From Within

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